The Cable Knit Jumper

Right now as I type this, the UK is in the middle of a freak heat wave. However – being British – I don’t expect it to last. The true autumn and winter weather is just around the corner, and it will soon be time to break out the necessary knitwear and heavy outerwear in order to combat the wind and cold. Knitwear is a true menswear essential; the cardigan, crew neck and v-neck jumper all hold pride of place within the man’s wardrobe as they are versatile and perfect for layering in casual or formal looks. Assuming you all have the basics down (see part 6 and part 7) and your neutral knitwear collection is in good order, today we are going to concentrate on a new piece that is fast becoming an essential within your style arsenal.

The cable knit has made waves the past couple of autumn/winter seasons, and this year the choice is better than ever. For those of you who don’t know what a cable knit is, dicitonary.com defines it as (adj):

…of a garment, knitted with a cable stitch, which creates the effect of twisted rope.

The first known use of cable-knit technique is stated as 1950, and in layman’s terms, a cable knit jumper will have ‘rope like’ knitted patterns running through part or all of the jumper.

Why You Should Own a Cable Knit

As mentioned above, once you have invested in your basic knitwear, you are going to want to take it to the next level in order to give you more options when it comes to creating outfits and separating you from the crowd. There are many ways to do this; pattern, colour, material, texture and detailing being the key points to consider.

Many of you will have already invested in patterned cardigans in prints such as Fair Isle, Nordic or even Navajo, whilst menswear has placed major emphasis on colour this year as well. However, for the guy who prefers a subtle, classic and refined style, detailing and texture are the go-to options for adding personality or character to your looks.

The cable knit jumper gives you both. The cable knit technique produces interesting detailing in the form of a rope pattern, whilst also giving the jumper texture; the rope detailing giving depth and an almost 3-D effect on your knit. It means that solid neutral colours such as your beige tones, greys and browns all look superb – allowing them to be worn simply on their own to great effect. Fuss-free fashion at its finest.

How To Wear: The Cable Knit Jumper

So how should you wear this classic item? As mentioned above, the cable knit is perfect for wearing on its own; don’t dress it up or get too fussy with it. Put your personal stamp on the look through accessories, colour combinations and other personal touches:

Men's Cable Knit Jumpers Look Book

How To Wear Tips

Some tips on getting the most from your cable knit jumper:

  • The cable knit is a perfect cold weather item; it is thick, cosy and perfect for layering over a tee or shirt. It is a ‘go-to’ piece, whereby you don’t have to think too much about it. Throw it on with jeans, chinos or trousers for an effortless look that is practical as well.
  • The texture and overall aesthetic of a cable knit lends itself well for pairing with casual outerwear. So think leather jackets if you want to toughen up the look – especially Shearling lined if you want to play with textures – or for something a little more refined, how about a classic trench coat? Left undone and belted, of course.
  • The cable knit also looks great as an individual piece. The cabling is often enough of a statement on its own, so don’t be afraid to pull on your knit without any layers on underneath.
  • If you do want to layer, then I really love the clashing of styles that a shirt layered underneath creates. Shirts scream formal, whilst the cable knit relaxes the look completely. Wear with your suit trousers (or chinos) and a sharp shirt for the perfect ‘off duty’ outfit.
  • The cable knit jumper is meant to be thick and chunky, so do not be afraid to oversize. We often tell you the benefits of a slim and refined fit, but sometimes breaking the rules intentionally makes more of a statement. The cable knit is one of those items that can look even better slouchy and hanging off you – especially if you then keep the rest of your silhouette sharp. This technique also lends itself well for layering underneath, rather than over the top.
  • If you are of a skinny build and want to add bulk, then this jumper is perfect for you. You can keep your fit slim and let the cable knit bulk out your frame naturally – stopping it from becoming ‘try hard’. Roll neck jumpers with cabling are also a great option for you, as not only are they on trend, they will add some width to your neckline and shoulders as well.
  • If you are wide or heavy, then adding too much thickness to your frame can often throw out your whole silhouette. Keep your cable knit slim fitting and go for the crew neck styles. You should also be looking for a fine gauge knit which will combat the extra bulk a cable knit provides naturally. Farah Vintage and Topman are doing some great versions of these this year.
  • As mentioned above, neutrals look just as good in this style of knit, so you don’t have to feel pressured into utilising colour. Pair a great beige cable knit with bold blue or camel chinos and let the bottom half of your outfit inject the flair if necessary.
New Season Cable Knit Jumpers
  • Acid Multi Stitch Crew Jumper
  • Grey textured cable jumper*
  • Cream cable crew neck jumper
  • Inis Meain Mid Grey Merino Cashmere Aran Crew Knit
  • Cream Heavy Gauge Cable Crew
  • Teal Heavy Gauge Cable Crew
  • Brown yoke cable crew jumper
  • Farah Vintage Kingston Crew Cable Knit Jumper
  • River Island Stripe Cable Knit Jumper
  • Base Crew
  • Lander Crew
  • Suit Green Leopold Cable Knit
  • Allen DIP DYE CHUNKY KNIT NAVY
  • Norse Projects Olaf Cable Knit
  • Suit Cable Knit Crew Neck
  • BARBOUR Dockman Grey Knit
  • Polo Ralph Lauren Cable Knit Aran Sweater
  • Marc by Marc Jacobs Wool-Blend Aran Sweater
  • Polo Ralph Lauren Cable Knit Cashmere Sweater
  • Lou Dalton Hand Knitted Cable Knit
  • ASOS Cable Roll Neck Jumper
  • Chitterlins Cable Jumper
  • Polo Ralph Lauren Cable Knit Cashmere Sweater
  • Incotex Zanone Cable Knit Roll Neck Sweater